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Marketing of Red Sea demersal fish









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    An economic feasibility study of a trawl fishery in the Gulf lying between Iran and the Arabian peninsula 1972
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    While accurate statistical data on the depth of the demersal resources of the Gulf are scant, there is sufficient information available to justify investment in an integrated trawl fishery in some of the Gulf states. Because of the enclosed nature of the Gulf, and the fact that the coastline is divided among eight states, some of which, as a matter of national health interest, might profitably introduce fish as a dietary supplement for their people, while others are largely interested in export- market development, no single scheme can be evolved as a module for general application. However, identification of investment prospects in the United Arab Emirates and Iran should not be taken to imply that possibilities do not exist in other states. Uncertainties regarding the continuing availability, as such, of the presently defined international fishing waters (non-territorial) is a major constraint to formulation of bankable investment proposals in those states with minimal coastal frontag e. Logistical problems, including provision of port facilities, and the marketing of the potential catch present greater obstacles to development within the region than does the actual capture of fish. There is a bankable investment opportunity for a phased, first-stage, integrated trawl fishery, based on the United Arab Emirates, to operate in the territorial and adjacent waters of the Union, within the Gulf and in the Sea of Oman. There are also possibilities for extending the shore installati ons for such a scheme to cater for longer-range trawling, with medium-range freezer trawlers, in the international waters of the Gulf and the northwestern sector of the Indian Ocean. Such an extension would lend itself to promotion by joint venture between local commercial interests and an expatriate company experienced in operating such vessels. The feasibility of marketing demersal fish in Iran has been on a first-stage, integrated trawl-fishery project, provided that berthage and land can be made available at the new port of Bandar Abbas. In countries where shrimp are available, the attraction of this resource in export cash potential has acted as a constraint to trawl-fishery development, and will continue to do so unless these countries clearly establish separate zones of permitted operation for each, or completely integrate the two fisheries. Local sales of fish cannot be greatly increased in any Gulf state without carefully coordinated efforts in education of the inland populati on to accepting fish as a diet component and in development of a distribution and marketing system. Where are available to a demersal trawl fishery, good quantities of premium, first category fish such as red snapper, red mullet, grouper, and sole, which are universally known and of proved export value as well as many lesser known and unknown varieties which are worthy of promotional marketing efforts. There is an urgent need for the Gulf States to formulate, and consider means of administering, a common policy on the rational use of and protection of the resources of the Gulf in the best interests of the peoples who surround it.
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    Report of a bio-economic modelling workshop and a policy dialogue meeting on the Thai demersal fisheries in the Gulf of Thailand
    Hua Hin, Thailand, 31 May-9 June 2000
    2001
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    Similar to many marine fish stocks in Asia and elsewhere in the world, the demersal resources in the Gulf of Thailand have been subjected to excessive levels of fishing effort since perhaps as long as two to three decades. This has resulted in a change in catch composition with a higher share of short-lived species in the catch. The influence on the value of the catch is not unambiguously negative because several short-lived species including certain cephalopods and crustaceans fetch g ood prices in the market. In general, fish prices showed real increases over the last decade including so-called ‘trash-fish”, i.e. by-catches of small fishes that are converted into fishmeal. The rapid growth in feed-intensive livestock and shrimp culture production has resulted in a rapidly growing fishmeal market. However, there is certainly concern about the impact on the Gulf of Thailand ecosystem and on bio-diversity of a continuation of the very high levels of mostly indiscrim inate fishing effort, especially bottom trawling. While the immediate effect of a reduction of fishing effort could cause a decline in the quantity and value of the catch, the long-term benefit is likely to be very large. This is indicated by the findings of all three types of modelling approaches applied during this workshop, namely surplus production model (Gordon-Schaefer and Gordon-Fox), age-structured Thompson & Bell model (BEAM 5) and mass-balance eco-system model (ECOPATH).
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    Inland small-pelagic fisheries utilization options, marketing and opportunities for support 2012
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    The fisheries sector contributes greatly to the economies of the eastern, central and southern regions of Africa (ECSA) in terms of income, employment and export revenue. Until recently, only large-sized fish were exploited for human consumption but small-sized pelagic fish were used for animal feed production. However, in the last decade, concerted efforts have been made in various African countries to reverse the trend. For example in 2005, an FAO led study assessed post-harvest losses in one of the abundant small-sized pelagic fisheries (Rastrineobola argentea), in the East Africa states of Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. In 2011, Uganda through the Department of Fisheries Resources (DFR), requested FAO under the Technical Corporation Programme (TCP) to address the question of high post-harvest losses in the fishery and improvement of upstream handling against a backdrop of declining per capita consumption trends. Under this programme, several products were developed to increase Rastrin eobola argentea, locally called Mukene, for human consumption. The SMARTFISH Programme, with funding from the European Union (EU) built on previous efforts by initiation of the present study that has been designed to look at increased utilization options to enhance cross-border trade in small pelagics. As a test case, products from Brycinus nurse (Ragoge) and Neobola bredoi (Musiri) commonly found in Lake Albert of Uganda were developed together with potential Ugandan processors and the economic ally viable products were marketed in neighbouring Kenya and Rwanda to gauge their marketability. Using a structured questionnaire with some input from the Trade Event Specialist, some potential regional traders tasked to evaluate their prospects. Prior to product development, information was gathered on all aspects of the Musiri and Ragoge fishery, including the sanitary status of fishing vessels, time of capture, daily catches, drying surfaces, storage facilities, packaging, wholesale operatio ns as well as markets and transportation. The sand-free sundried products, powdered and fried products were promoted for regional markets. As a complementary study, the nutrient content of products from both fish species was determined for purposes of backstopping the three up-graded processors who were at different levels of development. The regional market opportunities surveyed indicated that there was an insatiable demand for all products made from small-sized pelagics ranging from sun-dried to powdered. The large quantities demanded by the regional markets could not be met by processors using traditional processing methods and operating at a small-scale. It was also evident that product quality was a determinant factor in product pricing. The cost of sand-free products was one and a half times more than adulterated products which underscore the influence of consumers in the market place. There were other external drivers that are likely to enhance regional trade of the identified value-added products from Uganda. They included population increases, regional geo-economic and political blocks, carbohydrate-based diets, nutritional properties of fish and civil strife or wars. During the implementation of the present study, there were two major challenges namely; seasonality of the two species under scrutiny and the competence of local processors to be up-graded to standards required by the regional as well as international markets. Both factors slowed down the implementatio n process because unplanned exposure visits and training had to be conducted to improve the competence of potential processors under the up-grading SMARTFISH scheme. In conclusion, there was an insatiable demand in the region for all products made from small-sized pelagic fishes from Uganda and trade in such products can be enhanced in the region with concerted effort from all key actors along the value-chain, improved upstream handling, broadened utilization base, consumption campaigns and enfo rcement of quality and safety standards. However, implementation of some intervention measures cited would require harmonized policies across national borders, substantial investment in the sector, sensitization of key actors with regard to market requirements and goodwill among policy enforcers at border crossings.

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